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Prescribing nature: Research suggests the outdoors are good for your mental health

daftandbarmy

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Which explains the great mental health outcomes in the Infantry :)


Dr. Melissa Lem says spending time outdoors can clear our minds, lower our stress​


For many teenagers, a driver's licence can mean freedom to visit the mall — but for Jon Cadang, it offered him a reprieve from the depression that consumed him for years.

One of his first stops? A creek near his home in Mississauga, Ont., abundant in fish that he was determined to catch.

It would take Cadang two weeks before he landed one, but it taught the forager and painter that nature could be a powerful treatment to what ails him.

"I realized that whole time, I stopped ruminating about my situation — all the bad things that were happening," said Cadang, now 25. "I realized that maybe being out here and putting myself towards a goal, even if that's just to catch fish, maybe that could help," he told Back to the Land host Duncan McCue.

"I liked what I saw. I felt at peace."

A growing body of research suggests that being outdoors can benefit mental health and boost memory, improve cardiovascular health and help us live longer. Additional studies find that nature lowers cortisol, the body's stress hormone.

With that research in hand, doctors in parts of Canada have signed on to provide what are known as "nature prescriptions" for those living with mental illnesses and physical health conditions such as heart disease and diabetes.

 

Oldgateboatdriver

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I am left wondering if it is the outdoors that help his mental well being or if it was the discovery of the therapeutic effects of fishing
 
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